RUTLAND (AP) - A fire that destroyed a Vermont plywood plant and left 170 people jobless also has disrupted a work program involving former inmates and people on supervised release.

Firefighters believe a mechanical failure caused the Rutland Plywood Corp. fire last month.

Keith Tallon, Rutland district manager for Probation and Parole, said the plant was the biggest and most consistent employment partner in the county.

Tallon said when the fire happened, 15 of the 66 people on furlough in the Rutland area were employed there. He said they were just a portion of the inmates who worked in any given year at the plant.

The plant's human resource manager was recruited to be a founding member of a new offender re-entry board designed to reduce recidivism rates.


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